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29 September 2012

White Fence Farm

We took a little trip today to White Fence Farm. We're still enjoying our week with Brett's family in town. Today began with a baby shower for Brett's sister (more on that later), and this afternoon we all headed to a fun little place outside of Denver for dinner and some good ol' farm-style entertainment.

Maren always loves seeing animals. She loved petting the goats and sheep. I was excited because she actually asked to have her hair in pigtails today...usually she just wants to wear it down. I think she still looks like a little girl in pigtails, and I'm holding on to the little girl days as long as possible!

Truett and his cowlick. Literally.

Truett loves his Papa.

Feeding the sheep.

A semi-decent family picture. These are hard to come by these days!

Gigi and Papa with the grands...again, a little tricky with the pictures-of-many-small-squirmy-children...but at least you can see all the faces! And nobody was crying. {yet}

She is so fun right now...I'm loving the 4-year-old version of Maren. She's funny, brave, and asks the best questions.

And he's pretty great, too...I think he's going to be a ham{no offense, Mr. Fake Pig}...always making goofy faces and being silly. I'll take it!

Blue eyes...

We enjoyed a family-style fried chicken dinner and went to ride the tire swing. It could have been a terrible combination, but was all good and fun. Phew.

Maren barely made the cut-off to ride the big slide. We could not get her to stop running back up the stairs for another go.

Who's eyes are creepier, the fake chicken's or Maren's?

If you're ever in the Denver area, I recommend a visit to White Fence Farm. It was a great place to take a bunch of kids for dinner. There were fun things to see and do before and after we ate. And there were corn fritters, which are basically a mixture between cornbread and donuts...I would maybe go back just for those. I feel like I say this all the time, and I hope I never stop...it is so fun to experience life alongside of my kids. Their curiosity and excitement over the simplest of things is so contagious. It is a lot of work to take kids places, but usually we make really great memories. Plus they're cute. And they mostly just enjoy life, which is refreshing. I might need to be reminded of this in the not-too-distant future, but tonight, I am very thankful.

25 September 2012

Weddings and babies, oh my

Brett's sister got married on Sunday, and I'm happy to say that we survived our first wedding experience with two small children. It's not for the faint of heart, though, let me tell you! As evidenced by the pictures below (which happen to be the only ones I took all day!!!), our minds and energies were focused on enjoying the special day while somehow keeping the smallest guests content.

Brett's sister, Tiffany, and her new husband, Mike, had a beautiful wedding. Hopefully I'll be able to snag a picture of the bride from another source. She really did look radiant.

Maren was the flower girl, and you'd have thought she'd done this a hundred times. She looked precious, and was so excited to be a part of the wedding. She took her job of dropping autumn leaves down the aisle very seriously. And she promptly came and reported a need to use the bathroom immediately upon finishing her job. Of course! Never mind that we'd taken her every fifteen minutes leading up to the big moment. At least I got to watch Tiffany walk down the aisle. And I returned in time for the vows and the kiss. Phew.

My little princess...

And, our efforts at getting a family photo were less than stellar. Truett was not interested in having his picture taken.

The best one, maybe?

Not happening...

And, just for a laugh...totally falling apart.

Maybe I'll show Truett these picture before his wedding, and insist that he cooperate more for his pictures. Oh, well. Truett was happy throughout the entire dinner portion of the reception, and he welcomed the chance to lay down in the pack-and-play for the rest of the night. Maren, meanwhile, danced her little heart out and did not stop talking until we pulled into our driveway after 10.

Congratulations Mike and Tiffany! We love you!

21 September 2012


I love looking back at my week through the lens of my phone camera...

We're still painting our kitchen cabinets...this week the island and desk got the black treatment. Brett took the afternoon off today to finish sanding the upper doors. I can't wait to have the white kitchen I've always wanted, but this is the LONGEST project in the history of projects. And it's in the kitchen, which we use all the time, so I can't try and forget about it. Ever. If you are crazy enough to decide to paint your kitchen...estimate how long it will take you and multiply that by two. Then just maybe you won't be disappointed with how long and tedious of a job it is.

Maren is very particular about what she wears. She loves this African dress from my college roommate, and wants to wear it all the time. What you can't see in this picture is the leopard print rain boots on her feet. Sweet Maren...

She still loves to play with her butterfly wings from last halloween. Thank goodness...because those things took me a long time to make. This year she's going to be a doctor...thank you Melissa and Doug for the costume I didn't have to make.

I got my new Erin Condren calendar in the mail this week...yay! And this was one of the stickers...hmmm.

I've finally been spending some time in the craft room lately...making some fun new things for fall.

I love this set...

The house is decked out for fall...although the weather hasn't quite agreed. It's been way too hot here for September. (In my opinion.) I did find a home for the chalkboard I made for our back to school pictures. I'm loving the daily reminder to praise...something I wish I didn't need to be reminded of. But I do, so I'm glad it's there.

Brett's sister is getting married this weekend, and we've got family coming to town for the big day. It's going to be a fun, busy week around here!

Happy weekend.

life rearranged

14 September 2012

Our friend Natalie the caterpillar

A couple of weeks ago, Maren thoughtfully collected some things from around the yard to create what she thought would be the perfect habitat for a grasshopper. She carried around her grasshopper house for several days, never quite finding the perfect inhabitant.

And then, last week, Natalie appeared out of nowhere right in our front entryway. Natalie was a beautiful, fuzzy, yellow caterpillar and swiftly became Maren's infatuation special friend for the day. Never mind that the house was meant for a grasshopper, it was easily adapted to be the perfect dwelling for Natalie the caterpillar. We watched her crawl around. We watched her curl up in a ball upon human contact. We diligently fed her a diet of leaves and grass clippings.

And then I gave Maren the bad news. Natalie could not live with us forever. In order for her to live, she needed to be let go into the 'wild'. Maren was sad, indeed, to lose the affections of such a fuzzy, small friend. But she demonstrated her true love for Natalie by willingly allowing her a chance at freedom in the big, big world of our front yard, certain that she was destined to turn into a beautiful butterfly. I didn't have the heart to tell her that Natalie was, instead, meant to become a gray, dirty, American Dagger Moth. Poor thing.

And so we said our 'goodbyes'...but not without a photo-session by which we could remember our good friend, Natalie.

Such a cozy home...aw, the pink paper was a thoughtful touch.

Maren was thrilled that Natalie took so warmly to her new front-yard-tree-habitat. And I was thrilled to avert the crisis of awakening to a dead caterpillar on my dining room table the next morning. Thank you Maren for caring so intentionally about nature. And I'll thank you, Natalie, for not returning home once you've turned into a big, gross moth.

From the phone...Instafriday

The single best thing about having an iphone {in my humble opinion} is the instant access to photo or video almost all the time. I always have my phone in my purse {or on the counter} and it's so fun to be able to capture small moments throughout the week. Here's a few pictures of life around here lately...

Pizza with veggies from our garden...a current favorite

Working on a few things for my Etsy shop...and maybe a craft show this fall

A very on-a-whim house project...just a little one called painting the kitchen cabinets

Phase 1...looking so much more 'us'

Maren's first ever 'real' haircut...she is growing up way too fast

Evening walk to the park...enjoying one of the summer's final hot days

Special delivery to me while Brett was hunting...did I get a good one, or what?

Our first {welcomed} taste of autumn

Thanks to a friend, I knew to visit the $1 spot at Target...and look what I found!

life rearranged

10 September 2012

Learning time

Early autumn...a good time for learning. 

Truett's known some of these tricks for a while, but I finally caught them on camera. You'll have to look past the crumbs left over from dinner and focus on his stunning dexterity.

Where's your nose?


And the latest...belly button!

This boy...he might be the end of me. I cannot get over his flippy, crazy hair or his mile-long lashes. He also happens to have the quirkiest most adorable little personality starting to bubble out of him. And now he knows where his belly button is...what's a mom to do?

And this girl...she started preschool today! {Actually last week, by the time I actually publish this post!} What?! How did this happen...I am in my 30's with a child going to school! Time needs to do some major slowing down. Today was perfect, though, apart from my tiny emotional outpouring on the way home from preschool {with only 1 kid in the backseat}. Thankfully, Brett was driving so I was able to focus on getting myself under control. I didn't think I'd cry, but I did. I am a little sad about her being gone 2 mornings a week, but mostly this morning just made me realize what season of life we're heading into...namely the 'growing-up' season. Maren is starting to become more independent. This year it's just two mornings a week, but next it will be more. She's quickly shedding the slightest little bit of 'baby' she might have hanging on, and she's moving towards being a 'kid'. She's got her own set of ideas, feelings, thoughts, opinions...most of which are so endearing. I'm really excited to see where this year leads...I know she's already thrilled about the new friendships and experiences preschool is bringing her way. And ready or not, it's here!

Maren was very opinionated about what she wore to her first day of school...thankfully it matched!

Hoping to make this little chalkboard an annual tradition...with Maren writing her own name.

She was so excited, and a little bit nervous. Maren asked for a picture with Brett and Truett...I love how much she enjoys her family!

The girls...

When I dropped her off, she walked right into the class, gave her teachers a big hug and never looked back! When I picked her up, I was greeted by a cheerful, still-excited Maren with a basketful of papers and projects to show me, and the SHOW AND TELL BAG! Can you think of anything more exciting than being the first preschooler in your class to bring in show-and-tell?! It's been quite the topic of conversation around here. We'll see what she decides. I'm thankful for her sweet teachers and the 2 little friends she's already talking about constantly. I'm sure the year will be a good one, growing-up and all!